There’s a feeling of drastic change this year at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, home to the Wimbledon tennis tournament. Don’t worry, the players are still wearing all white and bowing and curtsying to the Queen. But when one looks upward from Centre Court they’ll see a new translucent, retractable roof, meant to keep away the rain that inevitably delays the matches every year. Read More
Update: Wrong Matteo Thun knives. More after the jump.
We’ve been all over the architecture/fashion hook-up, but what about cooking? Age-old knife maker Zwilling J.A. Henckels has just announced a new set of knives designed by Milanese architect Matteo Thun. They certainly look nice, enough so that your culinary-inclined editor considered getting a pair. But the Times talked to Thun about the knives last year, which, it turns out, cost between $300 and $450. That’s well out of our meager price range, but hearing Thun justify the exorbitant cost is worth it all. Read More
Reuters today reports that Frank Lloyd Wright’s famed Ennis House in Los Feliz has been put on the market for $15 million, potentially taking it out of the public realm. The textile block house, which looks a lot like a large Mayan Temple, was made famous for its role in Blade Runner and a slew of other movies and tv shows. According to Ennis House Foundation president James DeMeo, the foundation just didn’t have the ability to keep it going: “We’ve made a lot of progress, but at this point a private owner with the right vision and sufficient resources can better preserve the house than we can as a small nonprofit.” Read More
On June 27, Open House New York celebrates one of our last links to the early history of modern architecture with a birthday tribute to John Johansen. Long admired for his intricate concrete forms like the U.S. Embassy in Dublin (1963) and far-out assemblages like Oklahoma City’s Mummers Theater (1970), Johansen has blazed a highly original trail over a career spanning more than a half-century. Read More
I first remembered reading about it in The Economist, arching an impressed eyebrow, and then forgetting about it. After all, this was before the Iranian elections had even taken place, let alone led the country into its current near-revolt. But there, at the heart of it all, was an architect. Read More
In recent years, the proliferation of satellite events at New York’s International Contemporary Furniture Fair has grown robust enough to compete for the attention of fair-goers. Now, a handful of young designers have identified a parallel void surrounding NeoCon in Chicago, and this week, they mounted The Promise of This Moment: Objects that Augment the Everyday, a group exhibition including work from 14 Chicago-based designers. Read More
Yesterday we took a construction tour of Gensler’s new 55-story Marriott/ Ritz Carlton tower at LA Live, at the south end of downtown LA. A great tour overall, with plenty of spectacular vistas and an opportunity to see the innards of what will be one of LA’s most iconic buildings (stay tuned for an “In Construction” feature on the project in our next issue). The highlight was checking out the scene from the helicopter pad on top. The lowlight was checking out the sign on the first floor noting “this job site has worked 0007 days without any accidents.” Read More
Meier In A Box
Pin-Up: Magazine for Architectural Entertainment features Richard Meier in
its Summer 2009 issue. Turns out “architectural entertainment” is not an oxymoron after all, at least not at Pin-Up. Meier poses on the cover with the box containing his $1,800 limited-edition lifetime opus from Taschen. Box placement and the architect’s sheepish grin remind us of that infamous Justin Timberlake/ Andy Samberg SNL video skit. You know the one. It’s that musical DIY about how to create an extremely personal boxed gift. Coincidence, or is Pin-Up just living up to its tagline? Buy the issue and tell us what you think. Buy it now. Read More
Yesterday, New York real estate blog Curbed picked up a rather nerdy feature in the UK-based Architect’s Journal: their top ten list of the most important buildings from Star Wars. In addition to judging each project by aesthetic and programmatic merit, the journal draws parallels between the architecture of that galaxy and that of earth. Notables include the Cloud City of Bespin (“a well-appointed luxury resort… complete with hotels and casinos”), the Bright Tree Village on Endor (“rated BREEAM Excellent, the development—by architect Wicket W Warrick—makes use of locally sourced materials, is carbon neutral, and far exceeds Endor’s notoriously strict building regulations”), and Jabba the Hutt’s palace on Tatooine (“originally built as a monastery by the B’omarr Monks”). The “run-away winner” however is the second Death Star (“a menacing spherical chunk of Brutalist infrastructure”).
The mood was noticeably subdued at this year’s NeoCon World’s Trade Fair in Chicago, which ends today, but many attractive and innovative new products were introduced. For our special Midwest issue we offered a preview of things to look for at the show. Here are a few additional products that stood out at the Merchandise Mart. Read More
We’ve heard the story now and again, designers being influenced by art and architecture, but just when we thought architects were the ones taking cues from designers – think Zaha – Italian shoe company Sergio Rossi’s Creative Director Francesco Russo, in a related press statement, cites specific references to the work of Hadid and photographer David Zimmerman in his latest shoe collection. Read More
Yesterday, the Bloomberg administration released an RFQ for a “BQE Beautification Study.” Now that’s a tall order, if ever there was one, as the borough-bisecting biway is one of Robert Moses’ many “most reviled” memories. But the RFQ also signals a diminishment of sorts for the once ambitious mayor. After all, it was only three years ago that, with the help of Alexander Garvin, the city had envisioned decking over the roadway, not only restoring long-separated and suffering neighborhoods but also creating opportunities for considerable amounts of housing. Then again, maybe it was an obvious decision. After all, those grand plans haven’t gone so well of late.